EVE and skill queues

EVE seems to have an even bigger influence on min/maxing on me than other games have (regarding real life things like payment). I mean, I have absolutely let an MMO subscription lapse a week before a 2 week vacation to resume it after that in order to not pay those 2 weeks if the dates align correctly, but…

Long story short, CCP has a sale, 49 EUR for 3 months Omega + 3 months of Multi Character Training (so exactly 10 EUR for that MCT), and I absolutely went for that. We have a war incoming and I took the chance to start training a cap alt. And on the other account… there are always a million things to train, even on alts or “just PI”. Anyway, the more skill queues the better, right? I had planned to pay the 2 accounts until the end of the year anyway, so it’s just a few EUR, and if I think I made a mistake there’s always the possibility to extract a few skills and PLEX an account to save on a month of sub later. We all know that this will not happen…

Also I’ve did some respeccing and redoing PI, trying to make money without having to resort to ratting. Actually I haven’t “played” daily for a few days now, but after exactly 3 months of giving 100% a week of lower activity won’t hurt. Still need to login daily and shuttle around some PI mats every 2-3 days, I’m busy enough.

The only toon without a real solid plan for the next months is still my main. I can already fly a lot of our Doctrine ships, so for now I’m simply patching holes where I can’t. Need to find something more meaningful though…

Finding my way back into SWTOR

When I left SWTOR a bit over a year ago I had 12 chars I was at least semi-actively playing. 6 on the Empire side and 6 on the Republic side. 10 of them were Level 60, 5 per side. Also all of the 4 base classes and one extra per faction, no duplicate extended classes.

The empire guild that I had joined in October 2018 had only kicked my alts but kept my main (which is perfectly fine if you ask me) and on day 2 I politely asked to invite some alts back and that was quickly fixed.

The main focus back then were Conquests and apparently the changes to Conquests did change a lot. We were usually grabbing the Large Yield planet without bigger problems, with group activities accounting for a sizable chunk of the Conquest XP per week, but also people reaching their personal goal on all alts. I do remember it was a bit of work to manage that if you weren’t actively playing that particular toon a lot that week.

So apparently this has changed and while I was really surprised how quick you manage to get your personal goal (30mins? per toon if you don’t know what you’re doing and coming back after a year, and if you spread the planets with quick weekly quests over a few days you can easily do 10 toons = 500-700k XP in 5h in a week I guess) and so another guild that’s bigger seems to be the top dog on our server now. We’re still number 2 – we’ll see how this evolves over the weekend and the coming weeks. But people can apparently solo a lot more and that’s when numbers count more than group content like operations. I don’t exactly remember how the rewards work and if we’ll get something next week if we’re number 2 on this planet and if this is still better than winning a Medium one. Whatever.

I think I finished Onslaught on my Sage today but I’m not sure if the follow-up quest is part of the expansion story line proper. I’m told to do Mek-Sha dailies now and wait, I guess. Also I met one of my missing companions but I’m not sure I have the Alliance Alert to recruit them again, as I read somewhere. I hope I didn’t miss that chance, I mean I didn’t kill them so it might work out in the end. Oh, and he’s 75 already.

I also finished Onderon on my Bounty Hunter and dinged 74 in the progress, so on to Mek-Sha on the weekend. 2 more toons dinged 71 while doing the Conquest, and 5 of the 6 others are close. As I’m not really sure if I should buckle up and do KotFE+KotET on all or even any of them (or do KotET on the Agent) and just jump to Onderon thereby getting the “default story” locked in. Do I really care on some alts? Do I care anyway? Missing companions would be the only thing I guess. I wasn’t such a fan of the linear movie-like experience that I’m keen on doing it a 4th time…

I suppose just getting to max level and then acquiring gear via Renown would still be possible, there is no good reason to do the story just for this set of green 268 gear you get.

Also looking at my old “goals” posts and see which of those are still current, I guess the clear current goals are:

  • find out if I finished Onslaught on Sage
  • finish Onslaught on Bounty Hunter
  • finally find a good outfit for my Sage, seriously…
  • get 9 chars to 75
  • do the remaining 2-3 Conquests this week
  • buy the new Alderaan Stronghold (also Umbara?)
  • finish the 1000 kills achievements passively (i.e. have the correct companion out)
  • ~7 warzone matches for M1-4X
  • level Guardian
  • level Juggernaut

Worst change this expansion so far: the small shield icon for Bound-to-Legacy gear is gone and I have no idea how I should keep track of my stuff in my bank tabs now.

Remaining WoW goals for BfA

With starting to get into SWTOR again and EVE still going strong I think it’s time to officially take WoW activity and goals down a notch and stop logging in for the sake of logging in. I think I’ve reached or am close to most of the goals I have set myself:

  • 1 per class, per faction at max level
    • Alliance Warlock dinged 80 yesterday, Alliance Priest is 73
  • get BfA reps to a certain degree
    • 7 chars have most BfA reps at Exalted
    • 2 are missing a select few ones, I’m waiting for emissaries here
    • might go for Ramkahen / Pandaria to Exalted, might not
  • Class mounts
    • Rogue and Shaman done
    • Demon Hunter and Warrior are kinda close to class hall done?
  • rest is probably out, might revisit later
    • Heritage Armor
    • 4 done
    • 3 leveling
    • 3 meh
  • Professions
    • check what’s missing next time Darkmoon Faire is up but I got a good chunk done last Darkmoon Faire, e.g. leveling Cooking to 100 or even 170 on 20 toons, then grabbing the last 5

So I guess it’s down to use of rested XP and just get those 3 toons a level or two every week or so. It’s not that it is not fun, but I’m not in the mood to play for hours and hours, but every few days is fun.

Orc Shaman on Farseer’s Raging Tempest

Back in SWTOR, I guess

I got persuaded to click a link to be referred as a returning player into… SWTOR! (as I’d been planning to)

Here are a few first impressions (I’d written about Onslaught very briefly in October).

My characters are a mess, needed an hour to log in all 12 and get just a quick overview. All but one of the 70s are at exactly 60% XP into Level 71 except for 1. That one was CL 300 and I see no difference. Really weird. the 2 5x are also exactly at 60% XP into the next level. Even weirder.

Edit a few hours later: It seems to reset to 70 + 0% when ingame for a while, so probably just a weird display bug.

As I remembered correctly, my Republic and Empire mains have finished KotFE+KotET, and one alt has finished KotFE. Everyone else has finished most of the story lines up to that part, except for Ilum (half of them), Oricon (a few them), and Iokath (only the 3 I think). I still have the “Use the Group Finder”, “Try Starfighter!” and “Join a Warzone!” quests on most of them.

Half of them are completely swamped with BoE Adaptive Gear, sorted by Slot. One has all Feet+Legs items, one all Headgears, etc.pp.

2 new Astromech pets, 4 decoration items, a title, and 4 useless unlocks times 12.

I had a lot more millions of ingame currency than I’d remembered. Apparently I just collect it and don’t spend it. I also have 3 Gold Cartel packs of Decorations, unopened, must have bought them just before leaving. I also have 5757 Cartel Coins to spend. Yay.

Half of the toons have no spec, half still have one. That’s gonna be fun.

Wanted to start the Onslaught quest line, but I couldn’t find it. Fleet. Ship. Ossus. And then again all of those. I could finish the “Hearts and Minds” quest on Odessen, but then nothing. Then I went to bed.

This morning I did a complete run around Ossus, doing 11 dailies and fulfilling my weekly Conquest goal but the XP bar stopped at 99%. Researched some more.

Apparently I am a “subscriber”, but not a “subscriber”, so until I pay I will not get Onslaught.

Goddammit, Bioware, this (paying for new content) is completely fine if you message this correctly and not let me search for the breadcrumb quest for an hour and then block me from progressing at 99% of the XP. Had I not gotten any XP at 70.0% I would’ve noticed it. I had planned to pay anyway, but because I don’t know if I would waste these 7 days now I’m probably gonna wait – good job! I even got the “You’re a subscriber!” popup when I logged in and on the account management page I also have 6 days left. How poorly can you name this?

Anyway, weekly Conquest resets in 6h, so I’m gonna do something else before starting to go to 70.99 on the army of alts tonight. And maybe I’ll find out if I won’t waste these 6 days so I can subscribe sooner than next week.

Too busy to blog

I didn’t actually mean to not post for two weeks but I was kinda busy with EVE. Also a little bit with WoW.

Yesterday I managed to get the first Legion Class Mount on my Orc Rogue (mostly for forgetting about them completely), I just had to finish like 5-6 quests.

Orc Rogue in T5 on Shadowblade’s Murderous Omen

Then today I dinged 110 on my Zandalari Troll Paladin (3rd Paladin to 110+) an grabbed the Heritage Armor, which was the whole point of this.

Zandalari Troll Paladin with Heritage Armor

Also I only mentioned in passing that I finished the Mechagon grind around May 21st and the last missing class (Alliance Warlock) already dinged 60 last weekend. So for the goal of 1 max-level per class, per faction I’m missing 60 levels of Mechagnome Warlock and 47 levels of Worgen Priest, that should be doable.

On the Heritage Armor project: Void Elf Rogue is 68, Nightborne Priest still 70, Highmountain Warrior still 61, Vulpera Hunter still 30 and haven’t started a Lightforged Draenei, but on the other hand the Paladin was number 4 of 10 finished already.

Shooting and looting

EVE’s Forsaken Fortress update from May 26 made unfueled structures go abandoned after a week, and more importantly also drop their contents when shot. And you can shoot them in one not very long sitting.

r/EVE and the greater EVE community is divided. Some find it awesome and some say it’s a bad idea because returning players might ragequit instantly when their stuff which they had deemed safe is gone.

I’m torn on this. Yes, of course it sucks if your stuff is gone. I also think CCP should’ve provided a longer warning period and not just a few weeks between the announcement and the patch going live. But I also think that’s no reason to have the other people have all the juicy loot and so I’ve been in a fleet of 40-70 people for the second night in a row the moment I stopped working. I don’t have a tally, but we’ve popped quite a few structures and between some duds we also had some awesome loot. Let’s see how many days this will continue and how much it will yield. You can probably beat the ISK/hour (been at this for ~16h now) but it’s fun. It’s probably a once-in-a-lifetime event to just go from structure to structure, shoot it, loot it, and continue. Big thanks to our scouts and main organizer.

First thoughts about Shadowlands

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about Shadowlands and my future in the game. Yes, right now I’d rather play more EVE but I’ve not put WoW away yet. So when I just saw Telwyn’s post… might as well write it down.

I may have written about this at length but from 2005 – 2014 I was mostly a Horde player, usually with a guild full of people and only had a single high-level Alliance Rogue in a guild that I had joined because 2 of my ex-Horde guildies originally came from there (same server) and also went back there. That was in 2009 and I’ve sometimes reached the level cap on that Rogue, sometimes not. When I stepped away completely from WoW in 2014 (end of MoP) and then came back to have a brief look at WoD, I was still 100% Horde. When I came back to play Legion, for the first time ever I set my focus on the Alliance, leveling a Demon Hunter and having a lot of fun, then adding some alts – all in the Alliance guild because the Horde guild has been completely dead for a few years. Again in BfA I leveled Alliance first (Dwarf Retri Paladin this time) and now I have nearly as many max-level Alliance toons as I have Horde. Still did all my rep grinds on my old Horde Rogue Main.

So, what about Shadowlands? Right now I really plan to raid again, at least the first tier. The expansion is supposed to launch in the winter, which absolutely suits me well (but I guess this year it wouldn’t have mattered anyway…), but what will I play?

The only I thing I absolutely hated about my Rogue was that it’s a pure DPS and I can’t have a tank or healing off-spec. So this time I also really want to focus on one main character, and still have an off-spec, so this eliminates every pure DPS class. On the Alliance side this is no problem for me, as my Orc Rogue isn’t available anyway, so I can just level him casually at some point.

What do I have available? I guess my raid main-spec will still be DPS. It’s what I do best and restarting raiding after all these years I am absolutely fine in not having the pressure of tanking or healing. Unless we’ll be short on either, of course, then I’m probably up for stepping up.

  • Dwarf Paladin – Not sure I like Holy, but I’ve had fun tanking in the past, a possibility
  • Night Elf Daemon Hunter – played both specs in Legion and loved them, likely
  • Night Elf Warrior – didn’t Prot tank since MoP, but I loved it, likely
  • Worgen Druid – didn’t Bear tank since TBC and didn’t heal since… WotLK I guess, unlikely
  • Dwarf Shaman – while I like Resto a lot, I’m not sure I want to main this shammy, undecided
  • Dark Iron Dwarf Monk – I haven’t tried tanking or healing on this, but I don’t enjoy Monks, very unlikely
  • Worgen Priest – I don’t like Shadow and have never tried Holy, didn’t Disc heal since WotLK, unlikely

So this doesn’t sound like I’m about to use one of the three DPS+Heal classes, and I’m not sure about one of the DPS+Heal+Tank classes, but I’m in favor of both DPS+Tank classes. So right now it looks like a decision between Warrior and Daemon Hunter, with Paladin on 3rd place and Druid still possible. Sadly I don’t have a lot of attachment to this Druid, as I boosted her at the start of BfA and only played her this expansion. I at least “mained” the Paladin and also leveled her up properly (with a little help from the invasions before Legion though). I think I’ve actually raided once and did quite some dungeons on the Warrior and the Demon Hunter was my Legion main.

Similarly I don’t feel real attachment to the Priest and the Monk. The Shaman is different because it’s the one I killed Algalon with, so I’d say that’s proper raiding 😛

Also this means these toons are out, with the current plan:

  • Human Rogue, the aforementioned original Alliance alt
  • Dwarf Hunter
  • Draenei Death Knight
  • Kul Tiran Human Mage, I don’t like playing Mages anyway
  • Void Elf Rogue, just leveling because Rogue and Heritage Armor
  • Mechagnome Warlock, just leveling because of the Heritage Armor and because I don’t have an Alliance Warlock
  • Gnome Rogue, would have to be transferred from a different server anyway

Also I didn’t really touch on the possibility of a Horde comeback, because I simply don’t believe in it. I’d need to find a guild whereas I have a perfectly fine and functioning one on the Alliance side. Also all the years have disconnected me enough that I’m ready to switch mains for good. Took a while, and I am still kind of determined to at least do the reps on my Horde Rogue, but maybe not all the other “important” Horde chars.

How to kill your time playing by not playing

Did some industry stuff today and produced 15 T1 Cruisers on demand, made a bit of ISK with a few clicks. Still couldn’t play for real, so I tried ratting in a Vexor, semi-afk. 20 million ISK in 80 minutes. Not great, not bad, definitely thinking about stepping it up a notch to an Ishtar, Gila, or Dominix – but that means a 300m investment and “just” twice the returns, so would have to rat for 10h to make the ship back, and not lose it in that time. Hmm.

Also the 1 week wardec timer was finally up and I could rejoin the corp and undock a few minutes for Planetary Interaction. Running with 6 chars now and only having to spend a few minutes every few days is good.

Also actually properly played for a short while last night and went on a stratop in the Eagle I bought this week. It’s not much (400m incl refits) but it’s the most expensive ship I’ve ever used in all the time I was active in EVE since summer 2013. It survived, and we didn’t get a fight because the other fleet we were chasing (after grabbing that one ihub) ran away.

Sightseeing in New Eden

Due not being able to properly play at the moment and being bored at home I decided to do a little sightseeing tour. Hopped into an Interceptor, set destination and waypoints and just had to click and not use my left hand. (Spoiler: It’s a bit boring.)

I stuck to blue space but I managed to see a few things and made a few screenshots.

Steve, the first Titan that died in C9N-CC, Esoteria
Minecore, K-X5AX, Feythabolis
Fatimar Outpost, MY-W1V, Catch
Amarr Military Brigade, HY-RWO, Catch
Titanomachy, B-R5RB, Immensea – at the time (2014) the biggest battle in EVE’s history – this was still fresh in my memory when I first went to NullSec in May 2014

Professionalizing EVE

So I actually followed on the plan I hatched last week, which means I now have 2 Omega accounts for the time being

  • Account A, Omega
    • Main, 53m SP, going for a few Level V Gunnery Skills
    • Ex-Hauler alt, 5.3mSP, doing PI, using MCT to get into an Interceptor for the next 2 weeks
    • just started a new alt for PI and not much more, 350k of skill injectors I still have should be enough
  • Account B, Omega
    • my old NullSec main, 15m SP, going for Interdictors and then Cyno Force Recon
    • my general purpose ex-Alpha 6.5m char, doing PI, going for an Interceptor as well
    • a fresh alt just for PI, 1 o r6 days left on the skill plan
  • Account C, Alpha
    • an older Combat Alpha char, still had just enough SP left for our Alpha Corp skill plan, so this has taken over the ship and skillplan from the “ex-Alpha” char.
    • One last alt in HighSec/Jita, in possession of all my HighSec assets
    • training up the Magic 14 on one more, just because it’s free.

Sounds very complicated but it’s actually just about these things:

  • dual-boxing ratting
  • having a scout alt
  • 4 chars are just for PI for now, I need ISK really badly

Also paying attention when reading helps. You only get the 15d of Omega from Recruit-a-friend (or 2nd account) if you buy Omega AT THE EVE WEBSITE, not any “pack”. But it’s fine, I half expected this and I wanted that pack, but it means I am kind of committed to 2 months of dual-accounting now.

So overall, again EVE it decidedly different than other MMOs, but I mean I knew what I signed up for and right now it’s absolutely the most fun per hour I can get. Going on fun fleets, doing some stratop things and trying to get better at Exploration. So far I’m failing too many mini games and taking too long to scan, but my skills aren’t great either. But I like the Buzzard, it’s a very nice ship for this.